Tag Archives: baking

Coconut flour Coffee Cake aka I can’t believe I made gluten free cheesecake and I loved it!

So, my last adventure with coconut flour was a disaster. 
I made pancakes and they were actually awful.

So the rest of the flour there was left had been sitting in my kitchen for months now, until last week my husband went to the store and bought 3 dozen eggs. Yes, this is what happens when you send a guy to the store and write “eggs” on the shopping list – you get 3 dozen of them. Too bad it doesn’t work like that when I write “ice cream” or “chocolate”.

Anyway, in order to use up those eggs I remembered about the coconut flour which always requires a lot of eggs.

I found a perfect recipe to try. Gluten free cream cheese coffee cake

I did made a few changes. I didn’t have pecans or maple syrup. And I used greek yogurt in place of the regular one (I think that what they meant in the original recipe). 

I think I found my new favorite cake and I do not feel guilty feeding it to the kids, also. 

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INGREDIENTS:

Filling:

  • 4 ounces queso fresco whole milk cheese ( I used it not because I wanted but because I didn’t have enough cream cheese)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese (room temperature) – 8 oz (or more) if you don’t use queso fresco! 
  • 4 TBSP raw honey (more if needed)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 TBSP dutch cocoa 

Cake:

  • 6 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon coconut flour, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup mix dried cranberries and raisins
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon 

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DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease one 8-inch round cake pan.

2. Beat together all ingredients for cream cheese filling. Set aside.

3. Combine the first five ingredients for cake then add the dry ingredients through the salt. Mix well.

4. Pour cake batter into pan and drop cranberries and raisins on top of the batter.

6. Top with cream cheese filling and use a knife or tooth pick to swirl it around.

7. Bake for 25 minutes and let cool before slicing.

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After one bite hubby described it: “well, it tastes different“, and he didn’t eat any more. The thing is that if we all ate by his taste buds we would be eating cheeseburgers, BBQ pulled chicken, chilli and apple pie for 7 days a week, 365 days a year. 

That meant that the whole cake is for me and the kids only, and I shouldn’t be so happy about it, as my pants are getting surprisingly smaller on me lately.  

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Have a great weekend my friends.

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Spinach and Beet Cornbread Muffins

I love cornbread, there is no question about it.
Using the little time off from our No.2, who is finally sleeping on her own, IN her own bed, I want to share one of my favorite cornbread recipes EVER.
This can be baked in 9 inch pan

or in muffin forms

For some reason I prefer muffins. I think, it’s because with those muffins I can limit myself more and control myself in eating them all in one sitting. No matter what shape this cornbread has it is still delicious.
The spinach kind has no spinach flavor whatsoever, I would say it’s even sweeter than the one without it, while you can surely taste the beets; not a lot, though.
Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
3 eggs
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
3 heaping tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup baby spinach, rinsed*
1 very small beet, steamed
If you want to make JUST spinach or JUST beet cornbread then double the amount of the veggies (1 cup of spinach, and 2 small beets or 1 medium).
Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 F. In a blender, puree the butter, sugar, eggs and evaporated milk for about 30 seconds.
2. In a large bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, salt, and baking powder.
3. Add the dry mixed ingredients to the blender and blend until just combined.
4. Pour half of the batter out leaving another half in a blender.
5. Add the spinach to the batter left in a blender and blend until the mixture is evenly green and there is no big pieces of spinach left.
6. Pour the batter into muffin forms to about 3/4 full.
7. transfer the remaining batter into the cleaned blender and add cut into small cubes steamed beet. Blend until well incorporated.
8. Transfer the batter to muffin forms.
9. Bake for 25 minutes.
Print the recipe:
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Tortilla bowls

Tortillas are the “must have” in our house lately.

My husband likes quesadillas.

Our daughter can eat them just with peanut butter. She likes them a lot!

I like to use them in all kinds of wraps. So far, my favorite are spinach-strawberry wraps on homemade whole wheat tortillas.

My husband is not a big fan of the homemade ones so we still buy them for him.

Anyway, homemade or not we eat a lot of them.

Lately I’ve discovered tortilla bowls and the are a big hit in our home.

Whenever I make them our daughter tends to eat more of what’s inside, what I use to sneak more veggies in her.

They are super easy to make.

I use big muffin baking forms:

Not to torn the bottoms of the tortillas, very delicate I fold the tortillas inside the muffin form. 

Bake in 350 F for 10 minutes.

Fill with whatever you want.

Sometimes I make it just for my daughter so she has a funny bowl for her nuts to snack on. She loves it! And I have less dishes to wash 😉

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Vegan Wheat Germ Semolina bread

What a delicious bread I made this week.

My first bread made from the start to the end in a bread maker.

It took 3 h 20 min to be done with the entire process.

It was awesome.

I just put all the ingredients into the machine and went away.

I had the time to do 3 loads of laundry, go for a swim with my kiddo and clean around the house.

When I came back it was already time for lunch. And what could be better than a fresh-baked bread

topped with light chicken salad:

Recipe for 1 1/2 Lb Loaf:

1 1/4 cup water

1 1/2 Tsp. salt

1  1/2 Tbsp. sugar (I used turbinado)

3 Tbsp. Wheat Germ

2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

3 Cups Semolina Flour

2 Tsp Active Dry Yeast (I used bread machine yeast)

Directions:

Put all the ingredients in the order as listed above. Set on basic bread cycle. Come back when it’s done. Take it out of the pan and let cool for about 30 minutes before slicing.

Enjoy.

This bread makes really good toast and it’s wonderful for sandwiches!

Store it in a zip lock bag in room temperature.

The only con of making bread in the kind of machine I have is the weird shape and HUGE slices, but I can live with it.

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Nectarine Raspberry Rye Galette

I think I have just discovered the whole world of galette. For a month or so I’ve been delaying the inevitable. I knew I want to make it but I got lost among all those recipes that circle around the web.

I look through all kinds of recipes for the dough and finally decided to go with one that calls for rye flour. Lately I experiment more with all kinds of different flours, for example today I baked delicious, perfect for sandwiches, wheat germ semolina bread. Wonderful crust with a soft and fluffy inside. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it 🙂

recipe coming soon!!!

As for the gelatte: from this dough recipe I made two middle size galette. One sweet and one savory.

The rye flour gave it and amazing nutty flavor. The crust just melts in your mouth!

Recipe adapted from Linda from The Tart Tart:

Ingredients:

For crust:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, very cold, cut into small cubes
6 Tbsp. cup very cold water
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup rye flour
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

For filling:
3 big nectarines, pitted, cut in half, sliced 1/3 inch thick
1/2 to 3/4 cup fresh raspberries
4 Tbsp turbinado sugar (regular brown sugar will do)

– for this recipe I used only 2 Tbsp. of sugar and the fruits were definitely TOO TART FOR MY HUSBAND but pretty tasty for me.

Egg wash:
1 egg yolk
1 Tbsp heavy cream

Directions:

In a big bowl combine both flours and salt. Add cold butter cubes. Work it with your hand(s) until all the butter is combined and the dough resembles wet crumbs. Do not overdo it. Make a well in a center and pour 3 Tbsp of water. Knead it until the water is combine, make another well and add the remaining 3 Tbsp of water. Knead it again until the dough is smooth and easy to work with. The original recipe calls for 1/2 cup of water but after I added the first 6 Tbsp. is seemed to me that the additional 2 Tbsp. would have made the dough way too sticky and too wet.  

Divide the dough into 2 the same size balls. Wrap in plastic foil and chill for about 20 minutes in the freezer. After that take out one ball and on lightly floured surface, with a rolling pin, roll the dough into a circle about 9 inch in diameter. It doesn’t have to be a perfect circle.

You might want to do in in between two sheets of parchment paper. I tried it but the paper was sliding back and forth as I was trying to roll the dough. Finally I ended up rolling it on lightly floured counter top and gently removing it to the baking sheet lined with parchment paper after all. In a few places the dough cracked but I sealed it working the dough gently with my fingers.

Add fruits. Arrange them as you want. I put the raspberries in the middle but it caused that, while eating it, the first bite was really tart. Next time I would arrange it in between nectarines.

While arranging the filling leave out at least 1 inch edge (2 inches would be perfect).

At this point sprinkle the fruit with sugar.

Fold the edges over the fruit.

Make sure to seal all the holes and cracks in the dough where juices can leak out while baking.

Repeat with the second ball of dough OR keep it till next use.

To use the frozen dough the next day or a few days later, take it out from the freezer 30 minutes to an hour before rolling.

Transfer baking sheet to the freezer and chill it for 10 to 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 F.

After the dough is chilled, remove it from freezer and brush the edges with egg yolk and whipped cream mixture.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the edges are golden brown and the filling is bubbling. 

Wait a few minutes before slicing. Enjoy warm or cold. It is delicious either way!

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Flax-seed meal pizza crust

 

Surprisingly enough, I rally liked this crust. It is such a unique and much healthier substitution for the regular one. 

I will make it again,

however next time I’m going to bake it for a bit longer in order to get rid of that slightly slimy texture of the crust. I am not sure if that can be done, though.

From this recipe I made pizza that had fed me and our daughter for dinner and lunch the next day. Husband wasn’t brave enough to try it. I spread the dough to about 1/2 inch thick and it took about 3/4 of 9×12 inch baking sheet. Next time I’ll try to make it thinner as it raised while baking.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 flax-seed meal

1 tsp. baking powder

2 Tbsp. fresh mint, chopped

2 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. sugar (or your choice of sweetener)

1/2 cup water

3 eggs, beaten

3 Tbsp. olive oil,

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 F

Mix well flax-seed meal, baking powder, basil, mint, salt, sugar. Add water, beaten eggs and olive oil. Mix util all ingredients are well combined. It will be very watery but that’s ok. Let the mixture rest for 15 minutes.

Spread the batter over a baking sheet layered with parchment paper (do not have to grease it, at least I didn’t and it worked just fine).

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. I baked it for 15 minutes but in my opinion it wasn’t enough. Next time I’ll bake it for 20 minutes.

Add your favorite toppings and bake for additional few minutes until the cheese is melted.

Enjoy.

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Polish flat bread with onion, corn, flax-seed meal and fresh herbs / tzw Cebularz Lubelski

While this dish is very popular in Poland and you can find it in almost every single bakery I had no idea that it comes from Jewish culture and it is actually called “Cebularz Lubelski” after one part of Poland where it suppose to originated from.

“Cebularz” means something with onion… and in this case it doesn’t mean that the onion is incorporated into the bread. It is not an onion bread.

After reading many descriptions of this dish it seems like I should say that it is a wheat cake with onion. I’ve decided to call it a flat bread but it is not a bread. The dough is more like for sweet buns or dinner rolls.

There are many ways people prepare the onion and many recipes mention is should be prepared a few days ahead. I didn’t have that much time and I was really craving this dish so I simply fried the onion while the dough was in my bread machine. Originally the topping is made from onions and poppy seeds. I didn’t have poppy seeds and I’ve decided to make it more colorful and flavorful by adding different ingredients.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup milk

3 Tbs. butter, unsalted

2 tsp. sugar (any kind: white, brown, turbinado)

1/2 tsp. sal

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour *

1/2 cup bread flour +1Tbs (if needed)

1 tsp. instant yeast

1 egg, beaten

1/4 cup flax-seed meal (can be switched for chia seeds)

1/2 or 3/4 big purple onion, chopped roughly

fresh corn from one cob

2 Tbs. olive oil

1/2 cup fresh herbs (I used mix of cilantro and parsley)

cherry or yellow pear tomatoes (optional)

Fresh picked from our “buckets garden” 🙂

* you can use different amounts of bread and all-purpose flours. If you don’t have bread flour you don’t have to use it. I have never tried this recipe with whole wheat flour, but I think, it would be ok to incorporate it into the recipe as well.

Directions for bread machine:

In a sauce pan put together the milk, butter, sugar and salt. Heat it up on low heat until the butter melts. The mixture should be lukewarm not hot. Pour it into the bread machine, add flours and sprinkle the yeast on top. Set the machine on “dough” and turn it on.

During the second kneading open the lid and add the egg saving about 2 tsp for later use. Add flax-seed meal.

At this point you might need to add an extra 1 Tbsp of flour (all-purpose or bread). The dough should form elastic, soft and shiny ball around the kneading hook inside the bread machine.

Meantime chop the onion and cut the corn of the cob. In a frying pan heat up 2 Tbsp olive oil, add chopped onion and corn. Fry until the onion is soft. Add salt and pepper to taste.

When the dough is ready, take it out of the bread machine and divide into 6 balls. On a lightly floured surface roll them into a flat circles, about 5 to 6 inches in diameter.

Transfer them into a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Brush the edges of each piece with the remaining egg. In the middle of the flat bread put about 3 Tbs of the onion-corn mix.

Bake for 15 minutes in 395 F or until the edges are golden brown.

To make this dough without bread machine just follow a regular directions for making yeast dough by hand or Kitchen Aid.

Dissolve the  sugar and yeast in very warm milk and wait until bubbly. Add melted and cooled butter, salt, flours and knead. Add beaten egg and knead until the dough is not sticking to the side of the bowl and creates easy to work with ball. Transfer the dough to lightly oiled bowl, cover with a cloth or plastic foil. Leave in a warm place to rest until doubled in size. When it’s ready punch in in the middle, add flax-seed meal and knead a little bit more until everything is well incorporated. To finish follow the instructions above. 

Serve warm, topped with fresh herbs and cut into wedges fresh tomatoes.

Chewy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

I found this recipe on the package of Reese’s Peanut Butter Chips. I didn’t buy those chips for the recipe. It just happened that trying to come up with some ideas how to use the chips I looked at the package and read the recipe. I normally would use them for “Thick, Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies from Smitten Kitchen – our family’s all time favorite. Sometimes I like to add an extra sweetness to this original recipe using different kinds of chocolate chips. This time I thought about peanut butter and that’s why I bought them but when I read the recipe on the box I’ve decided to make them.

And by an accident I’ve discovered the new family favorite cookies!!! 

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup cocoa

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) butter, softened

1 cup white sugar (original recipe calls for 2 cups of white sugar)

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 cup peanut butter chips (or more)

Directions:

1. Heat oven to 350 F.

2. stir together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Beat buttter and sugar in large bowl with mixer until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla; beat well. Gradually add flour mixture, beating well. Stir in peanut butter chips.

3. Using a rounded teaspoon drop the dough onto ungreased cookie sheet (I used aluminum foil). Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Do not overbake; cookies will be very soft. They will puff while baking and flatten while cooling. (the original recipe says to bake them 8 to 9 minutes but in my case 8 minutes was too short and the cookies weren’t baked inside)

4. Cool slightly leaving on the baking sheet; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely.

those cookies are almost like a tiny, thin brownies; crunchy on the outside and so moist and chewy inside. they are delicate to handle because they are really thin. I tried to make an ice cream cookie sandwiches but those cookies seemed to be too thin and delicate. They were falling apart too easily but I really, really enjoyed the flavor:

From this recipe I got about 45 cookies!!! And today, two days after I made them, they are all gone already… .

btw, Happy Birthday America!

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Apple-Cherry Pizza and Sundried tomatoes Pizza on Mint-Basil dough

I have to admit, WE LOVE PIZZA. Whenever there is a pizza in the oven our two-year old always does her pizza song: “pizza, pizza, we eat”, and her pizza dance.

When my husband and I were dating I had surprised him with the skills of making pizza while he did the same eating it topped with a pineapple… .

These days we eat pizza quite often.

The base for my pizza dough is always the same. I have found the perfect one and I stick to it EVERY SINGLE time. I make mine in bread maker.

Recipe:

1 1/2 cups water

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

3 1/2 cups bread flour *

1 package (2 1/4 tsp) active yeast

1/4 cup chia seeds/flax-seed meal (or mix of both)**

* sometimes I use a few cups of all-purpose flour with a cup of bread flour. sometimes I use whole wheat flour with all-purpose flour plus a cup or half of bread flour. No matter what kind of flour I mix I always try to include the bread flour as it gives a nice crisp to the crust. and depends on how much of each flour is used the amount of water needs to be adjust as well.

** to add an extra twist to the dough sometimes I add:

a handful of chopped fresh parsley, mint or basil, or mix of these.

I’ll tell you, the moment you bite the crust filled with those herbs you’ll be in love!!!!!!!!

Directions for bread maker:

wet ingredients first plus salt and sugar, next flour and yeast on top. close the machine, set on “dough”. press “start”. During the second kneading open the lid and add herbs, chia seeds/ flax-seed meal. close the lid. after it’s done take it out, knead a few times on a lightly floured surface and let it rest for about 10 minutes, covered. Divide into 6 parts.

For deep dish pizza spread 1 part of the dough inside a pie pan. For New York, roll the dough thinner and put it on a baking sheet.

Refrigerate or freeze the rest of the dough.

Bake in 450 F.

For deep dish pizza for 15 to 20 minutes.

For thin crust for 12 to 15 minutes.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My husband’s pizza is pretty much the same each time.

Cheddar cheese, tomato pizza sauce (homemade), chicken breast, pineapple (fresh or canned), corn (fresh or canned), green or red bell pepper (not always). Thin crust.

chicken pineapple pizza

Mine varies, but a few weeks ago I have found an all time favorite:

cheese (cheddar, jack or mozzarella),

apple (granny smith),

cherries,

corn,

and pineapple (optional).

I know that it might sound weird but this pizza is one of the best dishes I have ever ate.

I came up with this idea after eating a pear gorgonzola pizza at California Pizza Kitchen a few moths ago.

My last creation was pretty tasty, too:

Sundried tomatoes in olive oil,

mushrooms,

cheese,

red bell pepper.

Although I burned the tomatoes too much it still was delicious! 

I spread the olive oil from sundried tomatoes over the dough first. Not a lot, just a bit. Then went cheese, mushrooms, bell peppers and sundried tomatoes.

Next time I’m going to add the tomatoes a few minutes before taking the pizza from the oven. This way I won’t burn them.

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Bread Machine Challah (Chałka)

Challah is a traditional jewish braided bread made on jewish holidays and Sabbath.

In Poland, challah is very popular and it can be bought in any bakery. Though, this baked goodie has no religion meaning. Many people don’t even know that this bread comes from jewish culture.

As a small kid I remember my mom buying it every Saturday. Each time we would sit at a kitchen table with her and gobbled it up, warm with some butter or jam on top, or just plain. Just the two of us. Fresh and warm challah is one of the best things ever.

The challah I remember was moist, sweet and very fluffy with not very crunchy (but soft) skin.

As I grew up the flavor and the texture of it have changed to something very hallow with hard and not very tasty skin. My mom and I didn’t really like it so we stopped buying it. Every now and then if I spotted a new bakery I would stop and buy one just to see if the bakery uses the old good recipe for moist and sweet challah but I had no luck.

I haven’t had challah for at least 5 years.

I’ve been looking for a good recipe for quite a while. Finally I decided to try the recipe from “Allrecipes”. I went through a many reviews under it and I made a few changes mentioned in one of them although I had to change it even more. At the end I ended up with totally different recipe but ah… still SO DELICIOUS !!!

After I took if out from the oven altogether with my daughter we couldn’t stop eating it.

I rolled the dough into three strands instead of four. Didn’t use any special way to braid it just the simple “hair style braid”. Because of that it came out a little flat. Next time I will invest an extra few minutes to learn the right way of doing it.

Ingredients:

1 1/4 room temperature water

1/2 cup sugar (the original recipe calls for honey but I didn’t have any)

2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 1/2 tsp. salt

1 egg, lightly beaten

3 egg yolks, lightly beaten

2 cups all-purpose flour *

2 cups bread flour

2 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast

1/4 flax-seed meal (optional)

* I guess, it depends on how big your eggs and yolks are but I had to add and extra 2/3 cup flour to the bread machine during the second kneading.

Directions:

Add to the bread machine: water, olive oil, beaten egg and yolks, all purpose and bread flour, sprinkle the yeast on top. Close the lid and set on “dough”. During the second kneading if the dough is really runny (like mine was) add and extra 1/3 cup of bread or all purpose flour, close the lid and wait for a minute or two. Repeat until the dough form a soft ball inside the bread machine. At the end add flax-seed meal.

Divide the dough into 3 parts and braid as you would make your hair 🙂

or follow this instruction for the right way how to braid challah.

Transfer the challah onto a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper, cover with light towel and let rest for about 60 minutes in a warm place.  

After it’s doubled (or tripled) in size preheat the oven to 375.

You can gently brush the top with egg white and sprinkle poppy/sesame seeds on top which I didn’t do. 

Bake for about 30 minutes. After 15 minutes if the top of the challah is dark brown you should cover it with aluminum foil to prevent from burning.

I baked mine for too long and I burned the insides a little too much.

The thing was that each time I checked the bread I was expecting to hear a hollow sound when I tapped it but each time it was soft and seemed not quite baked inside. Finally after 40 minutes of baking I had  decided to take it out and check the inside.

How surprised I was when it looked perfectly baked.

The entire house smelled like heaven 🙂

We ate it with blueberry jam on top. I mean, SHE ate it with the jam. I ate it plain. That’s how I like it.